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Vol. LXIV, No. 6
March 16, 2012

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STEP Forum on Negotiation, Mar. 27

The staff training in extramural programs (STEP) committee will present an Administrative Strategies forum on the topic “Focus on What You Want: Negotiating Your Desired Outcome,” on Tuesday, Mar. 27, from 8:30 to 11:30 a.m. in Natcher Bldg., Rms. E1/2.

Do you realize you are negotiating all day long? How much time do you spend trying to get your kids to do their homework? Have you stressed over how to ask for a promotion? You can enhance your negotiation skills and adopt new strategies to get better results in your personal and professional life. Come learn the art of persuasive communication and how to succeed in crucial conversations.

Have You Heard About the NIH Mentoring Program?

Federal employees interested in serving as learners and advisors across the NIH community are invited to join the April 2012 cohort of the NIH Mentoring Program. “Partnering for Excellence” and building confidential, interactive relationships are the foundations of this program. The program’s emphasis on developing core, leadership and management competencies at various levels will ensure a beneficial experience for both learners and advisors.

Program components include: senior-to-junior and peer-to-peer mentoring relationships, online application and matching system to connect individuals, mentor-mentee online orientation, 1-year mentoring relationship commitment and professional development events and activities.

The program does not supplant the NIH scientific mentoring and customized IC leadership mentoring programs available in some institutes and centers. Instead, it is intended to fill any gaps where those programs do not exist and enables NIH-wide or even across-HHS relationships. The deadline for online registration and matching is Apr. 30. For more information, visit http://trainingcenter.

Workshop on Individual Susceptibility

A program sponsored by NIEHS opens its 2012 workshop series with an exploration of “Biological Factors That Underlie Individual Susceptibility to Environmental Stressors, and Their Implications for Decision-Making” Apr. 18-19 in Washington, D.C. The workshop will focus on the endogenous and biological factors that influence individual variability in response to environmental exposures such as genetics and epigenetics, physiology, life stage and other biological differences. Presenters will explore new and innovative approaches for characterizing individual variability, as well as approaches for and challenges to communicating the relationships among individual variability, disease susceptibility and public health.

For information about this workshop and others in the series, visit

Standardized Substance Abuse, Addiction Measures Announced

Scientists in the field of substance abuse and addiction research can now benefit from a resource that allows researchers to gather, share and compare human-subjects data. As announced recently by NIDA and NHGRI, the Consensus Measures for Phenotype and eXposures (PhenX) Toolkit contains 43 additional standardized measures to promote the combination of datasets to more easily identify gene-gene or gene-environment interactions related to substance abuse and addiction.

Prior to this effort, the PhenX Toolkit contained nearly 300 standardized measures and protocols across 21 different research areas. Of these standardized measures, 15 were under the domain heading for alcohol and substance abuse. In order to expand the resources available to substance abuse researchers, an expert panel of academic and federal government scientists organized working groups to identify, vet and approve measures for inclusion in the PhenX Toolkit.

“The success of PhenX depends on its use by many different communities of researchers, such as those performing work of interest to NIDA. Their efforts will accelerate discovery of the genetic and environmental factors involved in common diseases,” said NHGRI director Dr. Eric Green.

“NIDA is encouraging all grant applicants proposing human-subjects research to use the PhenX Toolkit to increase scientists’ ability to combine data and work together across studies,” said Dr. Kevin Conway, deputy director of NIDA’s Division of Epidemiology, Services and Prevention Research. “The toolkit is a tremendous resource that provides access to standard measures of key biological, psychological and environmental constructs. By using common measures, researchers can readily compare and combine datasets to detect more subtle and complex associations, thereby promoting greater collaboration, efficiency and return on investment.”

For more information on the PhenX Toolkit, visit

First Schatzkin Lecture in Nutritional Epidemiology, Apr. 16

The first Arthur Schatzkin Distinguished Lecture in Nutritional Epidemiology will be held at 3 p.m. on Monday, Apr. 16 in Lipsett Amphitheater, Bldg. 10. NCI established this annual lecture to honor the memory of Dr. Arthur Schatzkin, a visionary scientist, mentor and leader in the field of nutrition and cancer. He joined NCI in 1984, and served as chief of the Nutritional Epidemiology Branch from 1995 to 2011. He was committed to understanding the role of nutrition in cancer etiology and prevention and was instrumental in addressing major methodological issues of research in nutritional epidemiology. He passed away in January 2011.

This year’s lecturer is Dr. John Potter, member and senior advisor of the division of public health sciences, Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center and professor of epidemiology at the University of Washington. Potter’s research focuses on the role of diet and physical activity in the development of cancer, with a particular emphasis on the epidemiology, biology, early detection and prevention of colon cancer. The title of his talk is “Nutrition, Environment, Development and Cancer: Casting a Wider Net.”

3rd Annual Halo Chase Set, Apr. 19

This 5K run/1-mile walk, sponsored by the R&W and the NIH Health’s Angels Running Club, will take place on Thursday, Apr. 19 at 11 a.m. at the Bldg. 1 flagpole. Suggested donations of $10 are being accepted and will go to benefit the NIH Charities. Look for more information about this event and how to register on the R&W ListServ later this month and in the April R&W Newsletter.

NIH Golf Association Begins Play

The NIH Golf Association is an 18-hole co-ed league that welcomes golfers of all skill levels to play in a friendly, competitive environment. Play is mid-week at a different nearby course about every other week beginning in April. The NIHGA has 6 teams of up to 25 players each. There are 8 stroke-play events, followed by a double-elimination team match-play tournament of up to 7 outings. Handicaps are maintained by the league. Play in any or all of the outings, as your schedule permits, at some of the best public courses in the Maryland/Virginia area. And enjoy the benefit of mid-week, group-outing prices, usually in the $50 range.  

There are prizes for low gross, low net, longest drive and closest-to-the-pin at every event. The year is capped off with a scramble in October that includes golf and dinner as well as individual and team trophies and other prizes. For more information about the league, including the 2012 schedule, visit or contact Jim Fleshman at

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